Local Republicans head to inaugural with high hopes

 Gloria Lee Snover, a Trump elector and GOP chair of Northampton County. (Image courtesy of Snover)

Gloria Lee Snover, a Trump elector and GOP chair of Northampton County. (Image courtesy of Snover)

Washington, D.C.,  is hosting hundreds of thousands of celebrants and protesters for inaugural festivities, including many from Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware.

What are they expecting from their one-of-a-kind president-elect?

“What I really want to hear is that the president and the Republican Congress are willing to take the ball all the way down the field,” said Gloria Lee Snover, the Republican party of chair of Northampton County.

Snover, an early and avid Trump supporter from the Lehigh Valley, spent her own money to win a seat as a Trump delegate to the GOP convention.

“I want to hear that he’s going to be firm on what he campaigned on and take it to completion,” Snover said. For her, that means replacing Obamacare, changing the tax system, redoing trade deals and creating jobs.

Others have different hopes.

The chairman of the Pennsylvania Black Republicans Council said he’d like to see programs targeted at inner cities.

“Something similar to the enterprise zones that were started in the ’90s,” said Calvin Tucker said, recalling an initiative of the Clinton administration, “where you went into major urban communities, and you made substantial investments in those communities.

Philadelphia resident Tucker said he hopes Trump will remember promises he made to the black community during the campaign and make them a priority.

The Trump inauguration follows a remarkable campaign season — and an unusually turbulent transition, with controversies about some of Trump’s appointments and his dustups with the media, the intelligence community and plenty of Democrats.

Mary Lou Doyle, a Republican state committee member from Chester County, said she doesn’t expect Trump to change his confrontational tone, even for the historic occasion.

“I don’t think he needs to tone it down because, if he tones it down, then he’s not genuine,” Doyle said. “And that’s what I believe he sold himself on to the American people, that he tells it like it is.”

Snover said she understands some people find Trump’s style hard to swallow, but “I think he is medicine to the American people. They don’t want it. They can’t look at it. They can’t take it, but once it starts working, they’re going to feel such relief, because the economy and America can be moving again.”

Republicans attending the inauguration said they wish disappointed Democrats would respect the outcome of the election and give Trump a chance.

But Doyle said she isn’t worried about protests.

“I’m a very firm believer in free speech and the right of peaceful assembly,” she said. “It doesn’t bother me at all. I think that there’s going to be fantastic security there, and I believe we all can feel safe in going.”

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